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Golden Horn

The Golden Horn is a narrow inlet dividing The European part of Istanbul into two. It has been used since the establishment of the city as a safe harbour which is 8km long. It has 4 bridges and the fifth one is currently under construction; the oldest one is Galata Bridge. The view of Istanbul from this bridge is so beautiful. Without walking on Galata Bridge don’t leave from Istanbul. During all day and night touristy restaurants, tea houses and hookah cafes serve underneath the bridge. You can enjoy having dinner, drinking coffee etc here while you are watching parade of ferries. Galata Bridge connects Eminonu and Sirkeci to Karakoy and Beyoglu. Galata Bridge and its vicinity is one of the most dynamic and colourful part of Istanbul. Many of the churches and synagogues as well as the Austrian, German and Greek schools still function. Galata tower is also very famous in Galata district. It has a lovely restaurant and night club overlooking the harbour and the entrance to the Bosporus at the top of it.


Locals call golden horn as a “Halic” which means The Bay of Istanbul. Golden Horn is a European name of it. Its name comes from the colour of the water when at sunset it shines with a gold colour because of the reflection of the sun or same people believe that Golden means fertile because 2 streams draining into it and there is great variety of fish here. Horn comes from the shape of it. 

Many factories, shipyards and other businesses were established along the shores of the Golden Horn in the 1950s with the population explosion and ineffective building laws so it became an ugly storage of grey city-sewage and industrial waste. All these are contributed heavily to the pollution of Golden Horn’s waters and also deterioration of the once scenic area with a terrible smell. Later on after 1983, pollution has been controlled, more than 4thousand factories, houses etc have been torn down and replaced by green parks. Today it looks very nice with its magnificent view and people can fish here.